How comfortable are you in your body? It may sound like a strange question, but can you truthfully answer it-- or will you rationalize with a half truth of ''I'm fine?'' I find it interesting the number of new clients I see that are completely out of touch with their body. They may not think that they are but at the end of a massage session they have very different feelings about things. It has to be experienced.
The average individual seeks out massage for pain after first exhausting other forms of therapy-- in particular traditional medicine. Of course there is nothing wrong with this approach and it is important to make sure there is nothing serious going on. Unfortunately, many individuals will not look further than traditional medicine until their pain is constant, interfering with their daily routines or the medications given simply aren't working.
We westerners live very fast-paced lives, giving little attention to our bodies unless they are behaving dysfunctionally. Then, instead of being kind and sending kind thoughts to our sore, tired, sometimes injured bodies, we curse the part that hurts! If we could learn to sit quietly with ourselves, giving attention to that which hurts we might uncover the cause and relieve it-- but that usually doesn't happen. We won't take the time to allow it to happen. The more pain we have, the tighter the muscles become and the more dysfunction we develop and the cycle of pain is set in motion.
We have completely overlooked the concept of body comfortable. Athough simple, it is dynamic. Massage is an excellent tool for achieving body comfort. It returns the body, and the mind, to more peaceful states through the registration of your own weight, breathing and motion; energy is renewed and refreshed and peace is restored to the mind. When you focus on the comfort of your own body, you are actually giving the your body what it needs to heal.
Keeping your state of ''Body Comfortable'' between massage sessions will require some effort on your part. Utilize some kind of stretching exercises. Yoga is good as well as Tai Chi. Or, just start by sitting or lying comfortably on the floor, then gently extend and flex your arms, legs, back, neck, roll your head-- whatever feels good. This is a time to be playful or experiment but don't overdo it. A big part of maintaining a body comfortable state is flexibility, which can be increased regardless of age.
Correct any glaring errors in posture, whether it's sitting at the wrong height at your computer, crimping your neck with the phone or even poor position while driving. Your body resists gravity very efficiently when the bones, your frame, are in alignment and holding your weight; muscles are not designed to do the work of your frame.
Speak gently to your body when it is tired, injured and sore; treat it gently as well. Instead of asking our bodies what is wrong, we ignore it, hoping it will go away. Pain and discomfort are messengers; don't ignore them. Work at correcting the things that bother you before they become unmanageable.
Utilize simple therapies. Hot or cold packs, herbal teas, poultices that work with the body to promote healing and a state of body comfortable.
Body comfortable is a state of mind but first it's a space in your body. You, too, can connect with the simple common sense and instinctive wisdom that is your body.
Till next time, Rebecca.